On Tuesday, the Chicago Blackhawks decided that they are going to keep making moves before Free Agency starts. The Blackhawks have traded for Vegas Golden Knights goaltender, Marc-Andre Fleury. It came as a shock to everyone that Vegas was moving their goaltender. Furthermore, what the return was made it ever the more interesting. Let’s dive into the trade and the implications of what’s to possibly come from all of this.
Fleury to the Blackhawks
What threw everyone for a loop when it came to the trade was who did Vegas get in return. The Golden Knights will receive AHL forward prospect Mikael Hakkarainen from Chicago. That is it, that is the whole deal. The Blackhawks will retain all of Fleury’s $7M AAV in the last season of his contract. All they had to give up was a forward prospect who played 14 AHL games in Rockford in two seasons.
This is pending a trade call.— Emily Kaplan (@emilymkaplan) July 27, 2021
Vegas will not retain any of Marc-Andre Fleury’s salary ($7 million, through this season). Only minor leaguer Mikkael Mikael Hakkarainen is going to VGK.
Clears the path for Robin Lehner to be starter in Vegas. 🌸is the No. 1 in Chicago. https://t.co/4g63eh143R
What makes it even more interesting, is that Fleury could possibly be the number one goaltender in Chicago this season. Although, their current goalie, Kevin Lankinen, has made a case as to why it could be a 1A-1B situation in net. All in all, it’s not bad to acquire a reigning Vezina Trophy winner in Fleury. Unfortunately, there is one problem that can throw this trade-off. It has been reported that Fleury will talk to his family, as of this being written, about his future in the NHL according to Elliott Friedman. If Fleury does retire and not show up to camp this fall for the Blackhawks, his $7M AAV will fall off the books. Plus, there is one other thing that could happen. There is a possibility that Chicago could flip Fleury to Pittsburgh for assets.
I’d imagine Pittsburgh is the one team Marc-Andre Fleury wouldn’t have minded being traded to, for family reasons.— Charlie Roumeliotis (@CRoumeliotis) July 27, 2021
If he doesn’t report to training camp, could Chicago look to flip him to Penguins? #Blackhawks have the room to retain salary. Vegas did not. Could recoup assets. https://t.co/8pWojM1yZr
If this is the case, then the Blackhawks would be seen as geniuses. Although, it is Stan Bowman so it remains to be seen if this actually did happen. But, as of right now, Marc-Andre Fleury is a Blackhawks goalie. Time will tell if he will be in a Chicago sweater come this fall depending on if he either retires or gets flipped to Pittsburgh. Until then, welcome to Chicago Flower.
My name is Zach Martin, the Chicago Blackhawks beat writer for Belly Up Sports and Belly Up Hockey. Follow me on Twitter for the most up-to-date Blackhawks content and news. I’m a co-host on a hockey podcast, Cannons & Tomahawks, that talks about all things NHL.